Immigrant Monuments/Cemeteries

MARKERS TO BE ERECTED IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF
SCHWENKFELDER IMMIGRANTS AS A BI-CENTENNIAL PROJECT (1934)
[The Schwenkfeldian, Vol 31 (3), March 1934, pgs 32-34]

“The Spring General Conference of the Schwenkfelder Church which met in the Towamencin Schwenkfelder Church, May 20, 1933, approved a resolution for the appointment by the moderator, Wayne C. Meschter, of a committee to make arrangements for the proper celebration of the Two Hundredth Anniversary of the arrival of the Schwenkfelders in America.”

One of the projects that came out of this committee was the placing of “a common marker or monument, listing all the names of the immigrants buried within that cemetery.  The name is to be preceded by the Emigrant Number as used in the new Genealogical Record [Genealogical Record of the Schwenkfelder Families].  A small individual marker, top 4-1/2″ x 8-1/2″with only the Emigrant Number cut on it, thus (E 30) is to mark the location of the grave of the individual.”

“In a report to the Central Commmittee dated December 1, 1933, it was learned that out of the two hundred and nine immigrants, the graves of one hundred and thirty had been located.”

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THE ERECTION OF MEMORIALS TO THE SCHWENKFELDER IMMIGRANTS OF 1731-1737
by Mrs. Selina G. Schultz
[The Schwenkfeldian, Vol 31 (6), June 1934, pgs 77-78]

“Not merely because it is rude to forget the dead, but rather because it is edifying and pleasant to remember our immigrant Schwenkfelder fathers and mothers, have memorials been erected this year, bearing their names.  Their strength of character and their purity of faith in God impelled them to carry out their vision of an abundant spiritual life for their children of generations to come.  Two hundred years ago [1734] they came, a company of one hundred and sixty-seven, seeking freedom to worship God in spirit and in truth.  Ten had preceded them in 1731 and 1733, and twenty-three followed in the years 1735-1737, making a total of two hundred Silesian fathers, mothers and children who came to this new world during the period 1731-1737.  Nine of their company died en route across the Atlantic and were buried in its deep waters.

“The resting-places of these two hundred courageous men and women remained unnoticed for the most part down through the years.  Unassuming and unnoticed as had been their lives, so were their burial places.  Crude native stone from the soil they tilled marked most of their graves.  No doubt this was as they wished it to be.  Had not their steadfast Silesian parents been given most ignominious burial in the carrionpit known as the ‘Viehweg’?

“But now, we their children of many generations removed, having come into the precious heritage which they envisioned and saved for us, were impelled by our love and our gratitude to erect suitable monuments, and to carve upon them the names of those fathers and mothers of the long ago.  That was our first thought in this Bi-centennial year.  May these memorials and the impressive services conducted at their unveiling help our children to remember to be faithful, and to be worthy of their spiritual heritage, and to give God all thanks.  ‘By the past we judge the present and gauge the future’.”

“A few days after the arrival of the main group of Schwenkfelder immigrants at Philadelphia, September 22, 1734, four of their number died and were buried in the cemetery set aside in Philadelphia for strangers, known as Pilgrim Cemetery, which, however, is no longer in existence.  Several were interred in a burial plot in Germantown, Pa., others at Chestnut Hill, Methacton, Salford, Towamencin, Washington, Hosensack, Kraussdale, and in several private burial plots. . . .

“Not all of the individual graves have been located, but so far as known each grave has been given an individual marker, and each burial plot a monument.  The quality, the beauty, and simplicity of these monuments are in harmony with the lives and characters of those whom they commemorate.

“In tribute to the immigrant Schwenkfelders, a series of Memorial Services have been planned including unveiling of monuments, reading of brief biographical sketches, and decorating of individual immigrant graves with flowers from the Schwenkfelder home gardens.  The Schwenkfeldian is publishing the accounts of these services in consecutive monthly issues.”  [see The Schwenkfeldian, volume 31, numbers 6 through 10, June through October, for talks presented at these services including short biographical sketches of the immigrants:  The Krauss Group, The Kriebel Group, The Wiegner Group, and the Yeakel Group – pages 77-80; Susanna Dietrich Schultz Group, Gregory Schultz Group, The John Family Group, The Yeakel Group, and the Meschter Family Group – 92-95; The Christopher Wagner Group, the John C. Heebner Group, The Kriebel Family Group, The Yeakel Group, The Hoffman Group, The Wiegner Group, The Heebner Group, The Heydrick Group, and George Weiss – 106-109; The Beyer Family Group, The Wagner Family Group, The Kriebel Group, The Seipt-Reinwald Group, The Anders Group, The Dresher Group, The Wiegner Group – 123-125; The Yeakel Group, The Schubert Group, and The Heebner Group – 135-137]

*     *     *     *     *

 BI-CENTENARY SERVICES FOR MARKING GRAVES OF SCHWENKFELDER IMMIGRANTS
[The Schwenkfeldian, Vol 31 (5), May 1934, pgs 63-64 and Unveiling of Monuments and Decorating the
Graves of Schwenkfelder Immigrants:  A Bi-Centennial Project
, The Schwenkfelder Churches in America, 1934]

 Sunday, May 27, 1934

Kraussdale Schwenkfelder Cemetery – monument and 11 graves marked (only 10 located 2013)
Hosensack Schwenkfelder Cemetery – monument and 3 graves marked
Hans Heinrich Yeakel Cemetery – plaque; no monument (names included on Hosensack Cemetery Monument)
Washington Schwenkfelder Cemetery – monument and 30 graves marked (only 28 located 2013)

Sunday, June 3, 1934

Christopher Wagner Cemetery – monument and 2 graves marked
Hans Christopher Heebner Cemetery – monument
Salford Schwenkfelder Cemetery – monument and 29 graves marked

Sunday, June 10, 1934

Methacton Mennonite Cemetery – monument and 10 graves marked
[2 more have since been identified and added]
Towamencin Schwenkfelder Cemetery – monument and 29 graves marked (only 24 located 2013)

Sunday, September 16, 1934

Yeakel Cemetery, Chestnut Hill (sometimes referred to as Chestnut Hill Cemetery) – monument
Hood Cemetery – no monument (names included on Yeakel Cemetery Monument)
Pilgrim Cemetery – no monument (names included on Yeakel Cemetery Monument)

*     *     *     *     *

ADDITIONAL SCHWENKFELDER IMMIGRANT GRAVES LOCATED AT:

Deep Run Mennonite Church East Cemetery
Easton Cemetery
Leidy/Leidichs/Leydig/Leidig Burial Ground
New Goshenhoppen United Church of Christ Cemetery

*     *     *     *     *

SCHWENKFELDER IMMIGRANT GRAVES MAY ALSO BE LOCATED AT:

Hagerstown, MD (private cemetery)
Henry Antes Burial Plot
Macungie, Lehigh County, PA
Schultz Family Farm Burial Ground (former) near Dr. J. G. Mensch Mill
St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery

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